Have you ever asked yourself how you got into the position of caregiver in the first place? If you’re a family caregiver, it’s probably come to your mind, out of all your siblings how did you end up being the family caregiver? If you’re a caregiver, chances are you are compassion itself, and that’s why this situation chose you.
I’ve come to learn I need to install a switch – I call it my compassion switch. I feel so deeply into this world and have so much compassion that some days it’s painful; it’s even painful to wake up in the morning; I don’t want to face the world and all its pain because I want so badly to heal it all.
That’s when the bell goes off and I remember, it’s not my job. If you’re like me, you may have felt you don’t belong here or you feel out of place somehow. You’re not alone in this thinking, but the opposite is true. You do belong here, you are a contribution and you make a difference.
As a sensitive soul, it’s important to install a compassion switch; one where you get to turn the dial up when necessary and one where you get to turn it down to protect your sensitive soul. If we go through life wanting to save, heal, and help everyone, then we, ourselves will burn out. Caregiver burnout is a real thing. We give too much and wind up empty and depleted.
If a cup is empty, there’s nothing left to drink from. Take time to nurture yourself, fill up your own cup; don’t wait around for somebody else to do it. Start noticing when you’re over-giving – especially where it’s not really necessary. Start to turn the dial down a bit; save some energy for yourself. It’s okay.
It takes some practice, but once you get used to it, you’ll soon begin to feel a spring in your step because you have saved some of that delicious, marvelous and compassionate energy for the most important person in the caregiving role – you!
Take a look in the mirror today; right here and right now and tell yourself, “I am an inspired caregiver. I deserve loving-tender care too.” Now, go do something just for you whether it’s a piece of chocolate all to yourself or some fresh air and sunshine. You take care of you so you can take better care of them.